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DH's no quitting rule

(64 Posts)
Milcy Tue 12-Aug-08 14:18:09

DH has a rule for our family about not quitting anything. So when the kids (or I) take something up we have to keep on at it.

I don't agree with it myself but it has sort of paid off in some respects. When DS took up Judo he wanted to quit about 6 months later but couldn't due to DH. 3 years later, DS has worked his way up the grades and has competed in numerous tournaments (gaining bronze in one!). Although he still says he wants to quit.

Anyway the latest one is that the kids decided to join up to a holiday football club. They go 3 days a week from 10am to 3pm all through the holidays. The first week was fine, the 2nd week they were 'ok' and now they hate going and want to quit. They can't because of DH's rule however and its making us miserable. DS said its totally ruining his summer holidays, DD was crying last night because she didn't want to go and I'm the one that has to deal with it all whilst DH is at work.

I know we have to respect DH but at the same time, should the kids be able to do what they want on their summer holidays?

Cappuccino Tue 12-Aug-08 14:21:37

all through the holidays is a lot imo

there is no relaxing time

I do agree that children myther about things that they actually enjoy - my dd1 says every week she doesn't want to go to her activity, but she loves it when she gets there

but if they are crying and miserable then that's another story

broccolispears Tue 12-Aug-08 14:23:01

So you have to respect dh's rather bizarre rule, but he doesn't have to respect the feelings of his wife and children?

It's a very strange rule - if you never give anything up, how do you make space in your life to try new things?

Let the kids quit football.

belgo Tue 12-Aug-08 14:23:45

I would never insist a child who is crying goes to an out of school activity.

I think three days a week every week is way too much unless they are huge football fans.

ib Tue 12-Aug-08 14:24:12

We had this when I was little but it usually had a time limit - e.g. you have to do it for a year and then you can quit.

I think the danger of the way you have it now is your dc could become very reluctant to start new things, for fear of not liking them.

Can't you talk to your dh and try to find a compromise, something which addresses his (reasonable) concern that the dc will not stick with things for long enough to give them a reasonable chance, while not forcing your dc to feel that everything they start is forever?

belgo Tue 12-Aug-08 14:24:20

Agree with BS.

missingtheaction Tue 12-Aug-08 14:24:59

I think it's a good rule in some ways but there are limits, and being as didactic about keeping up something that's not working is just as bad as not really trying in the first place.

If they have given it a good go, and giving up won't break a committment or inconvenience anyone else, can you negotiatiate in some way? Or are they old enough to have a serious conversation with DH about it - explain why it's not working for them.

Why is he like this? were his parents like this with him? can he remember any times when it was a bad idea?

It's horrible when you have to back up DH in something you don't really believe in.

Cappuccino Tue 12-Aug-08 14:26:10

I think you need to show your children that life is an adventure, with lots of new things to try out

if you have to stick to the same thing regardless, whether you like it or not, it could eventually put them off trying something new that they could really enjoy

MatNanPlus Tue 12-Aug-08 14:26:19

Surely it would be of benefit to amend the rule and say 2 school terms (our house rule when i was growing up) or a year.

Then a rethink, seems great for DH to make the rule and not be the one to lose interest / find the gloss isn't the reality of a hobby or interest?

If the children are unhappy it is surely counter productive as they will not want to try new things in case it isn't something they want to do long term so they don't take on new hobby's / interests

Soapbox Tue 12-Aug-08 14:26:21

Just make a new rule - no one in the family has to do anything that makes them really miserable.

Job done!

Or is it only DH that gets to make the rules?

He sounds like a nutter control freak.

missingtheaction Tue 12-Aug-08 14:26:26

I think it's a good rule in some ways but there are limits, and being as didactic about keeping up something that's not working is just as bad as not really trying in the first place.

If they have given it a good go, and giving up won't break a committment or inconvenience anyone else, can you negotiatiate in some way? Or are they old enough to have a serious conversation with DH about it - explain why it's not working for them.

Why is he like this? were his parents like this with him? can he remember any times when it was a bad idea?

It's horrible when you have to back up DH in something you don't really believe in.

ib Tue 12-Aug-08 14:26:40

What is it they are hating about it btw? They must be fairly keen to want to sign up to something so intensive, so what went wrong?

SoupDragon Tue 12-Aug-08 14:26:57

Quit the football. Don't tell DH unless it comes up. Tell him you did it because the children absolutely hated it.

Cappuccino Tue 12-Aug-08 14:27:23

it does sound a bit of a potty rule as well

I can see it if you have spent £numpty on a violin

but as a blanket rule it is a bit draconian

Miggsie Tue 12-Aug-08 14:27:48

If it's causing emotional trauma then this rule is not good.
I can sypathise with his view as soemtimes children go through a lazy stage (who doesn't?) and have to be cajoled for a while, but sometimes you start something and really don't like it, or do it for a while and feel like moving on...my DD did gym for 2 years then just lost interest, she does dance now and loves it.
I remember hating girl guides and wanting desperately to give it up.

If they are that unhappy, is there an alternative?
What exactly do they not like? When DD started dancing she got depressed as she was the worst in the class, so we talked about practise and learning and now she enjoys working on each step and mastering it.

Perhaps you should also talk to DH about this blanket rule. It's too inflexible and may cause all sorts of issues in the future.

Milcy Tue 12-Aug-08 14:28:48

Apparantly he did karate when he was younger but his parents didn't care whether he went or not. Therefore he quit. A few years later he bumped into a friend he used to go with and was told he'd just gained his blackbelt along with a couple of other lads DH used to train with and he's been gutted about it ever since.

I'm also concerned that they won't try new things. This already happened with gymnastics, DD wanted to give it a go but decided she'd "Better not" as she may not like it.

I have tried talking to DH but he's adament.

nailpolish Tue 12-Aug-08 14:30:31

how do you know if you like something unless you try it?

you try something, you dont like it, you try someting else

of course there ahs to be limits but fgs

Milcy Tue 12-Aug-08 14:31:28

they don't like it because DS says he's the worst one there and the other boys get cross with him and DD says its because she's the only girl in the class and nobody talks to her.

PortAndLemon Tue 12-Aug-08 14:31:40

Not quitting anything, ever? How does anyone in your family ever try anything new (if they can't try it out just to see if they like it, plus so much time taken by stuff they hate but aren't allowed to quit that they can't take up something they enjoy)?

Why do your children hate the football club so much? If they are that upset about it it doesn't sound like the simple sort of blowing hot and cold that your DH's rule is presumably meant to avoid.

I don't see the mutual respect in this situation. You have to "respect" your DH by following his rule (which you've said you don't agree with), even if it means your DS spending three years doing something he hates and your DD crying herself to sleep all summer, while he has to -- what?

I'd be mightily tempted to tell him that i had a new rule that he had to paint his bottom blue and go to work in a hula skirt, and that he needed to respect me by following that rule.

Earlybird Tue 12-Aug-08 14:32:21

How much longer does the football run? They're now into their 3rd or 4th week, so it can't last much longer....surely?

RubyRioja Tue 12-Aug-08 14:32:24

We tend to have rules too - if we sign you up and pay for the term, you do the whole term (unless somethign really awful). Not endless, but no quitting tomorrow becuase you cannot be arsed that day.

PortAndLemon Tue 12-Aug-08 14:39:01

So what if he's adamant? It's your family too. One parent doesn't get to unilaterally set "rules" for the family that the other parent disagrees with. At least, not unless they are in a bad Victorian melodrama, twirling their mustachios and bellowing "By thunder, I will be obeyed in my own house!".

Be adamant back -- his rule isn't workibg for you, and it isn't working for the DCs. You can see from the gymnastics example that it's already affecting your DD, and at this rate he's going to end up with children who won't try anything new ever and resent him for it -- and will resent you for not sticking up for them.

TheFifthApe Tue 12-Aug-08 14:40:51

sounds like a rubbish rule to me

family conference - they tell him how unhappy they are

hopefully he will see the error of his ways

have you paid for the full course?

nailpolish Tue 12-Aug-08 14:41:54

sad at DD being afraid to try new things

DoubleBluff Tue 12-Aug-08 14:42:48

Your children are not ever going to want to try new things as they will be too scared to give up if they don't lik eit!

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